Charlie Whelan says . . .

Don't believe it - "Blair in Labour relaunch"

In the old Millbank building, we had one person whose sole job it was to count the number of Tory party relaunches. We reckoned that the more they had, the more likely it was they would fall back in the polls. On such past evidence, Labour's relaunch could be the beginning of the end for this prime minister.

Alan Milburn - never a serious contender for the leadership - probably thought it was better to leave the sinking ship than drown with the rats. But even he, a staunch Blairite who "didn't give a flying fuck" about Gordon Brown, will be horrified at Blair's reshuffle fiasco.

The Prime Minister has never been good at changing his team - promoting bully boys like "Comrade" Reid, while leaving real talent like Yvette Cooper working for the buffoon of a Deputy Prime Minister. Never mind the cock-ups over the constitutional changes, what on earth is he doing bringing back failed ministers like Estelle Morris? And why doesn't he realise that giving cabinet jobs to unelected peers just because they're your mates won't go down well in the media?

Blair has now faced a week of negative headlines, but the papers in England have been positive compared to the pasting he's received in Scotland. How do you expect the Scots to react when it is clear that Blair didn't even realise he couldn't abolish the post of Scottish Secretary, and then gave the job to someone who didn't want it? His ultimate humiliation, however, was being forced by the Speaker to make a statement to the House.

No relaunch is going to knock this off the front pages, and whoever suggested the idea (Campbell) should be sacked. That, at least, will be the view of the chap Campbell employed to count the Tory relaunches.

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